Family Business Award Winner: Ace Wire Spring & Form by Richard Cerilli
Pittsburgh, PA, May 5, 2017- It was just a year ago Linda Froehlich was reporting that her family-owned business, Ace Wire Spring & Form Inc., was experiencing slow growth.
But now, she said, a lot has changed.
“Ever since Donald Trump was elected, it’s been very busy for us,” she said. “The overall feeling in manufacturing is that we now have a friend in government.”
She estimated sales are up 25 percent from the same period last year, and that growth is occurring in a variety of sectors she serves.
“Our orders are coming in from defense, power generation, agriculture — all of the [original equipment manufacturers] in general,” she said.
Ace Wire Spring & Form has been manufacturing compression, extension and torsion springs, as well as wire forms, since the company was founded in McKees Rocks in 1939 by the father and son team of Joseph Vodvarka Sr. and Joseph Jr.
Today, Rich and Linda Froehlich are the second generation to run the business, and a member of the third, son Ritchy, is the general manager and chief design engineer for the company.
Linda Froehlich says the biggest challenge facing the company is finding quality employees.
“Right now we can’t find people with the skills and the work ethic we need to keep up with our growth.”
Nevertheless, she’s optimistic that the situation will change because of the renewed emphasis on manufacturing.
“There are a lot of programs in local schools that should help us in the future,” she said.
Ace Wire Spring & Form Co. Inc.
Contact: 1105 Thompson Ave., McKees Rocks, PA 15136; 412-331-3353 What the company does: Manufactures compression springs, extension springs, torsion springs and wire forms Top officer:Rich Froehlich, Linda Froehlich, co-owners Year original business established: 1939 Number of employees: 49 Website: acewirespring.com